A Letter

Found this in the Drafts folder of my personal email.

This is probably the most personal I’d get online.

(Date: Oct 25, 2016)

Hello.

How are you? I hope you’re doing fine. Just in case you forgot already, you are in your bestfriend’s house, Wena, using her laptop to search for a new job while she sleeps in the couch.
It’s October 25. You are messaging a Joshua you matched with on Tinder. The night before, you made plans to meet him one of these days to have ~dinner~.
So you are looking for new jobs because as early as today, you are already miserable with your job in Robinsons. The workmates are fine. You actually get along with the people beside you and the people who comes by to get water from the nearby water station. Your boss is a-okay. Your job is amazing cause you work in a mall most of the time, not to mention the travel perks you get. But let me remind you again why you are looking for a new job.
You are looking for a new job because you are already miserable. You already lost trust and confidence with the company. Trust and confidence that they will compensate you for the work that you are doing but they did not deliver that. And that is a NON-NEGOTIABLE FOR US, WOMAN. WE HAVE MOUTHS TO FEED.
You are looking for a new job because you want to be able to provide your lola and tita and cousins a better house – a house with a simple living room, at least 2 bedrooms, decent kitchen and comfy toilet. You are looking for a new job that will help you finance this dream of yours.
You are looking for a new job so you can pay off your debts so you’ll have less problems to think of. You are looking for a new job that will let you pay your debts and still have some left enough to contribute to the house allowance and for yourself.
You are looking for a new job that will let you be a 20-something working lady. Your friends are doing those stuff, they may have problems you are unaware about but they are still doing stuff you want to do again.
Fainah, self, always remember why you are working. What are your reasons in looking for this new job. Stick to your reasons and weigh things out. You are only 23, you have so many years ahead of you. Do not mind what other people would say. It’s your life, your dreams, your goals. Just always be humble. Pray to God for guidance and wisdom.
You can do it!
Love,
Yourself.
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Nothing

I was listening to a podcast this morning for the nth time. It’s my favorite episode/topic of this morning radio show I always listen to since coming back to Manila. The podcast is entitled “Dear Almost Lover.”

 

The first time I listened to it – live/broadcasted – my hands started getting clammy. Something my body does when I’m in pain.

 

You might think I should be over this specific episode already, but I’m still not. My hands got clammy again, it went up to my arms and my heart beat was irregular once again.

As if it’s the first time I’ll listen to it ever.

I guess we never really get over some things.

I first listened to this when I was in high school. Safe to say, this is the anthem of my life.

 

Someday – Nina

Someday you’re gonna realize
One day you’ll see this through my eyes
By then I won’t even be there
I’ll be happy somewhere even if I cared

I know you don’t really see my worth
You think you’re the last guy on earth
Well I’ve got news for you
I know that I’m not that strong
But it won’t take long, won’t take long

Cause, someday someone’s gonna love me
The way I wanted you to need me
Someday someone’s gonna take your place
One day I’ll forget about you
You’ll see I won’t even miss you
Someday, someday

Right now I know you can’t tell
I’m down and I’m not doing well
But one day these tears, they will all run dry
I won’t have to cry sweet goodbye

Cause, someday someone’s gonna love me
The way I wanted you to need me
Someday someone’s gonna take your place
Oh, one day I’ll forget about you
You’ll see I won’t even miss you
Someday, I know someone’s gonna be there

Someday someone’s gonna love me
The way I wanted you to need me
Someday someone’s gonna take your place
One day I’ll forget about you
You’ll see I won’t even miss you
Someday, someday

AYOKO NA

AYOKO NA.

Pagod na pagod na pagod talaga ako. Ayoko na.

I’m too emotionally stressed these days. I thought I’m okay na. I was beaming last Wednesday. People complimented me for it cause they noticed I’ve been very quiet lately, so it was great daw that I’m smiling and talking to people more.

Usually kaya ko namang sarilinin yung pinag dadaanan ko, but this one is different. It’s so different to the point na I am seriously considering transferring to a different office or city.

It’s supposed to be simple – I just fell for him when I wasn’t supposed to. I’ve experienced far more heartbreaking moments compared to this but how is this more painful.

Must be because I see him everyday – going about his day and his life as if nothing happened. It’s so unfair. I never asked for this.

Truth be told, all these feel like it was just thrusted into my arms.

I never saw him that way. I was just talking to him cause I truly enjoy talking to him but people had a different idea. And people – not just those who are close to us, but people who we barely talk to cause they are on a different part of the office and all, but suddenly took interest in US. US. Fuck that pronoun.

I was just minding my own business but people started taking interest in us, noticing too much that we were talking “too much” with each other. And we really did. There wasn’t a day that we didn’t talk. How I wish I could take those days back.

Ayoko na. Sana hindi na lang ako nakinig sa mga sinabi nila. Never naman ako naging special sa kanya. We were just enjoyinh each other’s company by talking. Nothing special. NOTHING FUCKING SPECIAL.

I never planned on confessing those feelings for him. It was very superficial. Ni hindi ko nga inaamin sa sarili ko na I already harbored feelings for him cause the mere fact na pag-amin ko sa sarili ko or thinking about it, makes it so true, and I dont want it to be true. Partly because I dont want to give people a reason to believe what they were thinking or noticing, and partly because I know it will end with me crying buckets – and I really did.

I am such a mess right now.

And ayoko na. AYOKO NA.

“Dapat kasi di ka na lang pumunta dun.” “Dapat binayagan mo.” “Dapat kasi lumaban ka.”

Dapat. Dapat. Dapat.

These are what I got when I told them I was sexually assaulted by the man I’ve been seeing.

Just like what we always do, we hang out – in coffee shops, in parks, in his house.

Last Saturday, we had an agenda: to bake his mom’s birthday cake. We shopped for the ingredients together and when we got to his house, we started baking immediately to avoid lazing around.

Everything’s happening the way it should be, or every thing that involves baking a cake.

As I was resting, waiting for the cake to cool down before applying the frosting, I went for a nap in his room. It’s not my first time in there.

The numerous times I’ve been to his house, I’ve been in his room – and nothing ever happens except for watching movies and series, eating and drinking, and sleeping. But a few minutes into my nap, I felt something.

It started on my legs, then it ascended to my things, to my inner thighs. I felt another hand on my hips, moving its way up to my chest. I opened my eyes.

I saw him. Engulfed in what he’s doing.

I stirred – letting him know I’m awake. Letting him know I’m awake, hoping he’d stop.

But he didn’t.

I tried to resist. He pinned me down. I was crying. I cried the whole time.

Then I left.

As soon as I got home, I showered. Scrubbed my skin vigorously. As if it will remove the traces he made on my arms and on my thighs.

I decided to put everything at the back of my mind. My body was revolting against it. I have always took pride in being a feminist, an outspoken person who tries to always be level headed and who sees both side in an effort to be fair.

Shamelessly, I justified what he did to me. I told myself that it’s the same with the other times I had sex. That’s just it.

But no matter what I do, I can’t shake off the feeling.

I decided to tell two of my friends. And what they said broke me more than what he did.

They told me I should have went with them instead with him. I should have fought harder. I should have kicked him.

Yes. I should have went out with them instead of going to his house to bake his mom’s birthday cake. I should have fought harder and shouted NO to tell him I don’t want to do it. I should have kicked him in the balls so he’d stop.

But is it really my fault? Was it?

Was being in his house – a place I also consider home – my fault? Was it my fault that he suddenly had the urge and wanted to do it with me despite me saying no and physically resisting? Was it my fault that I felt helpless while he was violating me?

Was it my fault that he sexually assaulted me? Was it?

I’ve always taken pride in being the voice of the helpless. I’m an advocate of stopping the culture of victim-blaming. But I am now the victim.

I expected my close friends to understand me, to sympathize with me, to console me. But they did not.

The only thing I did was chose to accompany my perpetrator in his house to baki his mother’s birthday cake. But I’m getting the blame. I’m getting all the blame.

I tried to weigh everything out. Okay, maybe it really is my fault that I was there in the first place.

But no. I can’t blame myself for being there, for trusting him like I’ve always did before that afternoon.